I have worked in a garden since I was 8 years old. My folks had a big back yard in the country, we would plant a variety of vegetables and berries every year. The best was picking buckets of raspberries, and eating them by the handful. Same for eating peas right out of the pod when you wanted a quick snack. The downside was that teenagers tend to be destructive at times, my neighbor and I had some epic garden wars which led to a lot of mush, and some consternation among the neighbours. But I can say that I have always appreciated the value of fresh food, the labour it requires, and the relationship between the earth and the elements. I have planted several gardens as an adult, with varying degrees of success. My current garden is about 12 ft. by 15 ft. I save the leaves from autumn raking, when I dug out my plot I mixed them in with the soil, as nature's best fertilizer. I usually add sand when planting potatoes, as the soil here is a very thick gumbo, often lacking in loam. I plan on adding another yard or two of topsoil to optimize root growth...the dividends will be potatoes, carrots, peas, and beans, lettuce, tomatoes, and peppers to start. I think in an era where the global competition for food resources has made the prices so volatile it is important to be able to still reap the fruits (and vegetables) of your own labour.
For the first time ever I have ventured into flowers as well. I planted Siberian bulgross and hostas for shade plants. I planted a lily, un lys pour mon pays. However the rabbits made quick work of them. I planted sweetgrass for its scent, and respect for tradition. Parkland roses to impress the ladies, they are very aromatic at night. The honeysuckle has begun to flower. With the numerous cedars in the yard, butterflies and birds are abound. For the children, some of whom are foster kids, that share my residence, they get to witness the bounty of our mother earth. With a little bit of work.